The Shiawassee County Road Commission Board voted Tuesday, Oct. 27, to sell the closed Martin Road Bridge, which is over the Shiawassee River in Caledonia Charter Township east of Corunna, for $1 to the North Skunk River Greenbelt Association of Grinnell, Iowa.

The road commission board was recently approached regarding the possibility of the purchase. The bridge was built in 1885 and is a single-span pin-connected, Pratt through-truss structure. It is one of the oldest metal through-truss highway bridges in Michigan. It has been closed to highway traffic since May 1987.

The bridge was constructed in the era 130 years ago when the settlement of Valley Mills was nearby. It is among the such bridges remaining in the county. Another closed overhead-truss bridge is in New Haven Townhip, also over the Shiawassee River, at Six Mile Creek.

“In the past, there have been attempts to raise funds to refurbish the Martin Road Bridge, but to no avail,” said Road Commission Managing Director Brent Friess. “The road commission owns the bridge and would be responsible for it if the bridge became in such disrepair that it had to be removed for safety or environmental reasons (or collapsed into the Shiawassee River). This would be a costly undertaking and one the Road Commission does not want to take the chance of occuring.

“The bridge will find a new home at the Auburn Heights Preserve – NVF Site in Yorklyn, Del. under the Department of Natural Resources Environmental Control Unit and will be restored to its former glory.

“It is unfortunate it could not stay in Michigan, however, this is a great opportunity for the bridge to be functional once again, and be enjoyed by others at its new location.” He added that plans are for it to be used for pedestrians.

Closed Martin Road Bridge Sold was last modified: November 3rd, 2015 by Karen Elford